Madewell knows when to keep a good thing going.
The brand reconnected with Brooklyn-based Le Réunion for a limited-edition collection of six upcycled styles that utilize Madewell fabric remnants. The collection, which is available Friday exclusively on Madewell’s website, features six one-of-a-kind pieces.
Founded by Sarah Nsikak, Le Réunion is known for hand-quilted pieces that are made exclusively using recycled material sourced from fashion designers based in New York. Special textiles are also sourced through vintage stores and estate sales. For the collection with Madewell, Nsikak sewed scrap materials—some with prints and patterns from past seasons—into wearable art.
Items include a “swingy and full” tiered midi dress with spaghetti straps, a button-down shirt that can be dressed up or down, a color-blocked peasant shirt with bubble sleeves, paperbag-waist pants, a tote and a bucket hat. The collection will retail for $78-$348.
Madewell first began its partnership with La Réunion last summer with a two-piece capsule of dresses, The Tank Dress and The Wrap Dress, which sold out in less than 22 minutes.
Denim brands are making good use of their fabric remnants and deadstock.
Lucky Brand introduced its first-ever upcycled collection this spring with the creative help of Lars Nord Studio, a New York City-based studio that represents skilled tailors and provides design services for special projects. A mix of deadstock Lucky Brand garments and denim thrifted from New York’s Hudson Valley was used for most of the collection. Design-wise, the collection taps into ongoing trends for loose fits, handcrafted details and skin-baring statement pieces.
Upcycled fabrics even made their presence known at Haute Couture Fashion Week. Upcycled denim made an impact on RVDK Ronald van der Kemp’s runway. Artfully placed shredding created a windswept effect on a long jean skirt with a ruffle hem. Over-the-knee denim boots with Western motifs and belts and bags made with scrap fabrics kept a long coat dress cool and edgy.